The rise of robotics in K-12 schools has been buoyed by not just intrigue with the potential of new gadgets, but an increased focus on computer science education. Just a decade ago, only a few states allowed computer science to count toward STEM course requirements. Today, nearly every state allows computer science courses to fulfill core graduation requirements, and 17 states require that every high school offer computer science.
Marty Schultz has added a twist to hangman, the classic word-guessing game. His tablet-run version of the game has the same goal: pick letters to figure out a mystery word. But to pick a letter, you run your finger over a paper Braille sheet on top of the screen. The tablet reads out each letter, building your association between the raised dots and the alphabet. You tap twice once you’ve settled on a letter, and the tablet tells you how many times the letter appears in the mystery word.
When it comes to kids and screen time, the tide seems to finally be turning. What was a few short years ago a distinctly minority viewpoint - that time on phones, tablets, laptops, and video game consoles is bad for children and should be severely restricted - is now gaining ground.
As expanding internet access and other information technology advances improve the uptake of online education globally, e-learning is poised to make huge contributions to global development, boosting education systems in low- and middle-income countries, improving student diversity, and helping practitioners strengthen their skills and advance their careers.
Hackers do not much care about the size of the school district, when taking advantage of our growing dependence on technology and access. Coventry Local School District, in Akron, Ohio, has about 2,000 students in total. School was closed there entirely in May as the FBI helped guide district officials through recovery when a virus infected the network.
When you think of educational technology, do you picture a classroom full of teens immersed in their tablets--perhaps dissecting cyber-rats? That happens, no doubt, but edtech goes beyond K-12 classroom engagement tools, and plays an increasingly crucial role in the educational experience. As author and educator George Couros put it, "Technology will never replace great teachers, but technology in the hands of great teachers is transformational."
Most learning today involves the internet and this is a major challenge for schools with students who don’t have easy access to technology. Many schools are equipping their students with devices, but that alone isn’t enough. Students also need access to Wi-Fi or some other way to connect to the internet, whether they are at school or elsewhere.
Education and entrepreneurship don't always align. However, when they do, the results in the classroom can have a tremendous impact on students. I've spoken with hundreds of edtech entrepreneurs, and quite often, there is a disconnect between what the entrepreneur thinks is best for students or teachers versus the reality of a classroom.
Education technology has many faces. A prominent one has long been computer-assisted language learning, offering great promise for struggling readers, non-English speakers, or those seeking to master a second tongue. And, in recent years, the technology has raced ahead. No longer do students simply repeat what they hear through headphones or get instruction from a computer screen--now they can talk to ROBOTS.
The newest craze in tech is 5G wireless speeds. All the major carriers are racing to be the first to upgrade their coverage speed, investing up to $1 trillion to develop infrastructure for nationwide 5G by 2020. But while our nation focuses on developing cutting-edge cell speed, we’re leaving behind a far more important need: preparing our students for the new economy.